How to Get a Bus Pass for Disabled People

Getting a disabled rider bus pass can save time and money
Getting a disabled rider bus pass can save time and money (Image: John A Rizzo/Photodisc/Getty Images)

The process of securing a bus pass for a disabled person, along with the associated costs if any, will vary depending upon your particular transit system and the procedures they have in place. With that said, there are many similarities among bus transportation systems nationally and even internationally that makes getting a bus pass for a person with a disability fairly straight forward. Now, as virtually all city, state and national transit systems accommodate travelers with disabilities, it is often not necessary to request "off route" service.

Contact your local transit department to determine if they have programs specifically designed for disabled riders. Again, most all do, however each city, county or state organization managing the local bus system will have their own unique bus pass programs.

Determine your bus transit systems definition of disability. While there a great deal more similarities than differences, the transit authority in your area can provide a relatively clear cut definition of what is, or is not, considered a disability relative to the disabled bus pass program.

Complete the application process. As most transit systems provide special passes for a disabled rider that denotes the status of the discounted fare (free throughout England), there is usually an application process. Often, this requires first applying for and receiving an ID card, which is then used to purchase the discounted bus pass. Most applications can be found, and completed or at least downloaded, online at the organizations website. Visiting your local transit authority is another option when completing the application.

Determine the desired length of the bus pass, and if there are any unique attributes to be aware of. Most bus systems provide bus pass options of either a week, month, 3 months, 6 months, annual passes or some variation. Others, such as Los Angeles county, offer disabled bus passes to riders who qualify, however to receive the discounted fare the bus pass can only be used during "non-rush hour" time periods.

Paying for the bus pass, usually at a discounted price, may need to be done in person; at a transit office or an authorized outlet. This may be accomplished at the same time the completed application is returned, though each transit system will have their own process and procedure requirements.

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